The annual ACS Digital Disruptors Awards made a long -awaited comeback this week after a two -year hiatus due to Covid, to celebrate the best in technology.
Recognizes the achievements and talents of individual ICT professionals and groups in nine categories
There are 28 finalists. ACS President Dr Nick Tate said all the entries were impressive.
“The high quality of this year’s participants demonstrated how well Australia’s technology sector has adapted and thrived despite the impact of the pandemic and shows that we are well placed as a global tech hotspot among the finalists. showing the way we can lead the world, ”he said. .
Among the winners were social impact ticketing platform Humanitix, named best new tech platform, and auticon, a social enterprise and IT consulting firm that uses only neurodiverse people.
Auticon has partnered with Woolworths on how to best support autistic workers and a six-month pilot program saw auticon consultants embedded in the Supply Chain IT Quality Assurance and Testing team.
Auticon CEO Bodo Mann said the pilot’s goal was to reduce test times and improve the software, but Woolworths got more than they expected when consultants were able to automate a large part of the process. of bar code scanning.
“This program showed real power of thinking in a different way, the team looked at the problems as a whole and explored every opportunity to improve the solution,” he said.
“This project is a great example of our team working with an organization like Woolworths to create an autism friendly environment that enhances the skills and strengths of people across the spectrum.”
Woolworths has now signed a 12-month auticon agreement.
Mann paid tribute to everyone involved in helping the company win the ACS Digital Disruptors Award.
“It’s exciting to receive this award, but it wouldn’t be possible without the hard work of our Job Coaches, Consultants and of course Woolworths,” he said.
“I really want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has made it possible and look forward to building our continued relationship together.”
The nine categories that won the ACS Digital Disruptors Awards are:
Best New Tech Platform: Humanitix
What makes Humanitix special is that not only does it eliminate frustration for a customer when booking a ticket for an event, the founders made it their mission to bring people together to inspire and invest in humanity. Humanitix is the world’s first not-for-profit ticketing platform.
By using smart tech and agile innovation, Humanitix has redesigned the same experience for buyer and seller by eliminating inefficient processes and making the ticketing process enjoyable. On the plus side, all proceeds go to helping poor children around the world.
Emerging ICT Professionals of the Year: Chelsea Abel and Siddhant Shrestha
Chelsea is an automation, data and Artificial Intelligence professional with over 5 years of multidisciplinary experience, included in IT consulting and now as Senior Solution Consultant at ServiceNow. Degree-qualified in psychology, after an early career in Human Resources, Chelsea moved into the IT sector in early 2019, using technical skills in self-teaching. In his relatively short journey into tech, he has shown a lot of success.
With a passion for promoting gender diversity in technology, Chelsea is a member of ACS, Women In ICT, and the Australian Academy of Science and STEM Women. Chelsea has also volunteered as a consultant for a variety of programs aimed at developing women’s and women’s programming and digital skills, engaging them in industry roles, and helping them advance their careers.
Siddhant is an ICT entrepreneur who has worked in the industry for 10 years, founding two Australian start-ups-Bodhi Tech and Varicon, a VC-supported construction tech company of which he is the Chief Product Officer.
Siddhant described “a humble background” in Nepal, where he began his journey in IT consulting and then founded his own fashion eCommerce business as well as a non-profit, The Rose Foundation Nepal, before moved to Australia to pursue a Master’s degree, graduating in 2018. Siddhant volunteered as an Innovation Bootcamp mentor at Melbourne Business School, and also mentors graduates seeking their first role in the IT sector.
In his career to date he has demonstrated a strong approach to industry consulting, entrepreneurial drive and significant business success, and a sustained contribution to industry and community.
ICT Professional of the Year: Dr Mahendra Samarawickrama
Dr Mahendra Samarawickrama (GAICD, MBA, SMIEEE, ACS (CP)) is a senior leader in the AI and data science sectors with extensive experience in a wide range of people, culture, technology and management.
He is an author, inventor, consultant and regular speaker at various tech forums, conferences and events around the world. At the Australian Red Cross, he led the AI and data science strategy while developing capabilities for social justice and sustainability with diversity, equality and inclusion in AI and data science by mobilizing the power of humanity . She assists with education as an honorary visiting scholar at UTS and an industry mentor at UNSW.
CXO Disruptor of the Year: Bob Sharon
There are no limits to what we can do or achieve, other than what we put in our own minds ”. Bob Sharon is a passionate and patient ‘disruptor’ and innovator. Bob had the privilege of conducting the first NABERS Data Center Energy rating in 2013.
Bob is an honorary member of the company that supplied and implemented ‘Checkpoint FireWall 1 ver. 1.0 ‘, the first commercial firewall in Australia, in 1994. He has delivered speeches at numerous prominent conferences across Asia. He has been a well -known qualified global data center judge since 2015
ICT Research Project of the Year: University of Technology, Sydney
The team from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) are world leaders in developing Artificial Intelligence (AI) -based solutions for the industry. The UTS team has partnered with the American multinational e -commerce corporation – eBay. One of eBay’s business priorities is to increase Gen Z’s engagement with their products. This project will develop innovative social media tracking technology to help eBay understand trending topics on social media, including from influencers and through hashtags by conducting content analysis and discovery of the trend.
The project has incorporated innovative AI technologies to deal with multi-modal data using neural graphs
networks and deep mining. In addition to high-quality academic outputs and international recognition, this tool gives eBay new capabilities to deliver targeted marketing strategies for their Gen Z customers. It describes significant importance of translating research from universities to deliver real benefits to the industry.
ICT Service Transformation for Digital Consumer (Corporate): Frankly
Frankly turning your smart phone into a remote medical monitoring device. It does this by understanding who you are through a health examination, then it allows remote clinical monitoring through the use of phones sensors and advanced AI algorithms. This allows for better clinician information which ultimately enables better customer service. It’s about innovation.
ICT Service Transformation for Digital Consumer (Government): East Metropolitan Health Service – Data and Digital Innovation
COVID has brought many challenges, none more obvious than the medical sector and hospitals. The EMHS team was given a problem, how to respond and respond quickly to an event that no one had answered before.
There was no physical clinic or current workflow to use as the basis, so interactive role-playing and what-if scenarios became the basis for the initial concepts. They are validated throughout the three days of MVP development, and are quickly updated as new information becomes available.
ICT Service Transformation for Digital Consumer (NFP/NGO): Missions Connect
Missions Connect is the first immersive and interactive technological tool of its kind in Australia that is effective as a tool for telling the truth and raising awareness about a significant period of Australian Aboriginal history.
Missions Connect produces a VR model as a digital record of endangered heritage sites that can serve as a digital repository for storytelling and personal narratives documenting times, places and individuals lost in memory. Missions Connect serves to tell the history of Stolen Generations in collaboration with Survivors who not only share their stories but also in defining how it is told.
Missions Connect provides important visual context and connection between stories and places. It aims to document, interpret and distribute tangible and intangible heritage assets simultaneously in collaboration with Stolen Generations Survivors themselves.
Skills Transformation of Work Teams (under 100): auticon
Auticon is a global social enterprise with a mission to provide equal employment opportunities for autistic people. A large retailer in Australia has contacted auticon to explore the effects of neurodiversity on its IT project teams. Auticon’s autistic IT consultants are on board to work with retailer staff on a major software project. This model allowed retailer staff to understand the benefits of neurodiversity and the best way to support autistic colleagues in the workplace, while the mixed team achieved more innovation and more effective skills. project results.
The judges noted the positive effects for the retailer, that staff embraced a variety of thinking and problem-solving skills, and together with auticon consultants achieved measurable business benefits and sustainable change skills. The judges praised the auticon for achieving “significant results for industry and society at large” through its neurodiversity skills innovation program.